news on abducted Japanese: Iran
TEHRAN (AFP) — Iran said on Sunday it
has no new information about the fate of a
Japanese student who was kidnapped last week
by bandits in the restive southeast of the
are without new information about the Japanese
student who was abducted," said Iran's
overall police chief Esmaeel Ahmadi Moghaddam,
according to the state-run IRNA news agency.
to what we know he has not been taken abroad
and the objective (of the kidnappers) is
to exchange him for one of their imprisoned
companions," he added.
Nakamura, 23, a sociology student at Yokohama
National University, was abducted on Monday
after leaving his hotel in the town of Bam
by Esmaeel Shahbakhsh, a bandit who wants
him exchanged for his detained son.
bandit is believed to be the same man whose
gang abducted two Belgian tourists in the same
region in August. The two were later freed.
is home to a renowned ancient mud-built citadel
which was one of Iran's main tourist draws
until it was destroyed in the 2003 earthquake
that killed 31,000 people.
reconstruction efforts are continuing and
a trickle of foreign tourists are still visiting
the area, despite warnings from governments
about the risks of travel in the region.
have previously said the kidnappers moved the
Japanese citizen from Bam, in Kerman province,
to the neighbouring province of Sistan-Baluchestan,
which borders Pakistan and Afghanistan.
has been the scene of a string of kidnappings
of Iranians and foreigners in recent years,
blamed both on bandits and the shadowy outlawed
Sunni militant group Jundallah.
Sunday evening the semi-official Fars news
agency quoted a leading security official
in Kerman province, Abolghassem Nasrollahi,
as denying reports that Nakamura had been
added that a delegation from Japan was in
the region as security forces continue to
hunt for the student's abductors.